Transmission: In conversation with Tilly Lee-Kronick, Jonny Leitch and Phoebe

Transmission is our annual circus residency programme, where circus companies and artists take over our theatre for a week to develop new work. At the end of each residency week they share a ‘scratch’ showing of the newly developed work – and you can come and see these showings for free!

This week we’ve had Tilly Lee-Kronick, Jonny Leitch and Phoebe in the theatre, who’ve shared some exciting insights into their work and experiences as circus artists, as well as their goals coming into their residency at Jacksons Lane.


Introduce yourselves, how did you get started in the circus?

Tilly Lee-Kronick is an interdisciplinary artist, primarily a circus creator. Coming from a background of contemporary dance and theatre, Tilly found her love for circus at the European Aerial Dance convention and went on complete her degree in circus and physical theatre at Circomedia.

Jonny Leitch is a musician and dancer/aerialist. Jonny’s circus journey began, when director Billy Alwen discovered he could walk on his hands. Since then he has trained with Tilly and Extraordinary Bodies in aerial, movement and acrobatics.

Phoebe is a multidisciplinary artist. Having trained at Laban in Contemporary Dance, they meandered into the world of circus. At first, via flying trapeze at AirCraft Circus, before being enchanted by Chinese Pole, which is now one of their main disciplines. They haven’t looked back since being bewitched by the fundamentally fun, exciting collaboration and celebration of uniqueness found in the circus world.

As a company we are trialling out a new name… Head Over Wheels.

What are your goals for this residency?

After four initial weeks of research and development, this residency has been to research audio description. We have been looking into different methods of audio description and investigated integrating this into the show and sound design. We hope by exploring this now, when heading into the creation, the access is as thought through as the circus itself, not just an afterthought.

What does the creation and development period look like for you as a team? 

For us creation and development of this piece has been lots of playing. We enjoy exploring unusual aerial set ups that are accessible to all of our artists, then from the physical exploration we look for natural narratives and themes that arise from our movement. We work collaboratively, striving to make decisions democratically and exploring everyone’s ideas whilst trying to include feedback from our access consultants.

What are your inspirations and motivations as artists?

We are dedicated to challenging misconceptions around disability, and breaking the stereotypes of what a ‘circus body’ should look or move like. As an emerging company we strive to subvert the trends of glamorous and sensational circus, by making domestic and relatable work that can resonate with audiences on a personal level.

What can audiences expect from your scratch showing on Friday (11 August)?

The scratch on Friday is going to be an amalgamation of our findings over the last two weeks. It will be an informal and relaxed collection of snippets and ideas. We look forward to sharing our research with an audience, and receiving feedback which is so vital for the development of the piece due to its themes and formats.


You can catch the groups scratch showing on Friday 11 August at 5pm, tickets are free and can be booked online here. Missed this one? We have one more artist residency coming up, with a showing on Friday 18 August.

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